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By LARRY GOFFINET
REO—Perry Central built an early lead with hot outside shooting and used a third-quarter press to hold it and beat South Spencer 46-32 in girls basketball Tuesday.
Lynsay Goffinet hit two three-point shots and Brittany Parker hit a 14-footer as the Commodores built a 14-2 lead in the first four minutes.
Their other scoring in that span came on an inside basket and two free throws by Ashley Graves and a fast-break layup by Megan Thomas.
Hannah Edwards added a three-pointer with 2:23 left in the first quarter to keep the Commodores’ lead in double digits.
But Graves got into foul trouble shortly after that and South Spencer tightened its perimeter defense.
Graves went to the bench with 4:45 left in the second quarter with her third foul, called on what appeared to be a clean block.
Kerrigan Shourds hit one of the two free throws to narrow the Commodores’ lead to 21-16.
That was as close as the Rebels got, though. Perry Central freshman Sarah Spires replied with a three-pointer from the corner.
Parker scored off a teammate’s steal in the closing seconds of the half to build the Commodores’ lead back to nine.
They increased their lead to 39-25 in the first nine minutes of the second half with a full-court press that forced several turnovers.
“We felt like we had to get something started,” said Perry Central Coach Bill Dickerson. “We tried to create some offense with our defense. Brittany did a good job putting pressure on the point.”
Parker scored six points in that span. She hit a 15-footer, made a drive in which she lost her balance but still made the shot, and exploded past slower Rebel defenders for another driving layup.
“She knows no fear,” said Dickerson. “She’s slithery and she can go from 0 to 50 in three seconds.”
Parker led Perry Central with 11 points. She left the game with five minutes left after spraining an ankle, but it wasn’t clear whether she will have to miss tonight’s game with Forest Park.
“It isn’t swollen yet,” said Dickerson.
Graves added nine points and Goffinet eight.
Goffinet grabbed nine rebounds, Graves eight, and Edwards seven as Perry Central won the board battle 40-32.
Edwards made five steals and Megan Thomas had four assists.
The 1-1 Commodores hit 30.2 percent (16 of 53) from the field and 10 of 25 free throws.
“We’re better free-throw shooters than that,” said Dickerson.
Junior guard Sarah Lindsey led 0-1 South Spencer with 12 points and Chandra Schroeder grabbed seven rebounds.
Perry Central won the JV game 25-16 as Emily Sprinkle scored eight points and Skyly Cummings grabbed seven rebounds.